Saturday, March 21, 2015

A New Adventure Pt. 5 "Rome wasn't built in a day"

                Rome was not built in a day. Unfortunately for an impatient person like me that is not something I like to hear. But, it is something I need to hear, a lot! All throughout my life I have been an impatient person. Even as a child I can remember my mom telling me to slow down, take one step at a time, but that seemed like the hardest thing for me to do, so I seldom listened. Even today when I
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hear someone tell me to slow down and take it one step at a time, the fruit of impatience pops out all over. Thankfully, God is in me and with me and when He speaks I tend to listen more eagerly. But, I still need to hear it, and hear it again I did. He reminded me this morning that Rome wasn’t built in a day and I needed to slow down and take this journey one step at a time.
                Since we started on this new journey there has been a lot of things that needed to be done, and still much to do. There has been paperwork which needed to be filled out, filed, sent into the State of North Carolina for their approval, the registered, then waiting, waiting for the government to do whatever it is that they have to do. For an impatient person like me, the waiting is the hardest thing in the world to do. I want results, and I want it now. But whenever you are trying to build something, you have to wait for the mortar to set before you can put any more weight on it, and besides, Rome wasn’t built in a day!
                As we continue on our journey, let’s go back to Nehemiah and see what wisdom the Lord has for our paths today as we learn the fruit of patience. (Maybe He will pick the impatient fruit from my branches too!) We stopped last time in Nehemiah 2. Nehemiah had done all the research, found out what he needed and made the plan to start the building. Now, in Chapter 3, the building begins.
                “Then Eliashib the high priest rose up with his brothers the priests, and they built the Sheep Gate. They consecrated it and set its doors. They consecrated it as far as the Tower of the Hundred, as far as the Tower of Hananel.” Nehemiah 3:1 (ESV)
                The first lesson we learn is what they build first. They built the Sheep Gate. During the time of Nehemiah gates were the central entry and exit points of a city. The goings in and goings out of the city happened at the gates. It was also the most likely place for an enemy to attack. We have to secure our steps if we want this journey we are on to be a success. We are building and growing and expanding our pet care business, so for us the Sheep Gate is securing our financial future, establishing our client base, and taking care of the goings in and goings out of our daily operations. Whatever your journey is, make sure the steps that you need to take are secure. No matter if you are building a business, starting a ministry, or writing a book, you must take the necessary steps to secure the foundations that you are going to build upon. If you are not sure what to do, or how to secure your steps then do some research, read, ask someone who has done it before and then begin to set the gates. What is the point of building something if one little attack can destroy the whole city?
                The second thing I think we can learn from this is to set our journey’s, our new adventures apart for God. Notice that they build the Gate, and then they consecrated it. They set it apart for God. Paul tells us in Colossians 3:23 that “Whatever we do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men.” Set your journey apart, consecrate it. Make it for His glory and not yours. If you are starting a business to make money, then I want to encourage you to take a step back and rethink your purpose on this earth. As a Christian our lives are lived to glorify God, even in our businesses, we are to be glorifying God at all times.
                It is our hope and our prayer that this business we are growing will not just provide a service and be successful, but that it will be a tool, and outlet that God can use to minister to people, and to draw people to His free gift of Salvation. Many times already my daughter in law and I have had the opportunity to share the Gospel message with our clients. We have prayed with them, and for them. We have clients that contact us and ask for prayer, even though they are not believers. Our desire is not that we make a boat load of money, but our hope and desire is that through this business God can be glorified and He can use it to bring many through the Sheep Gate to the Shepherd who waits on the other side.  Set apart all that you are building for the Lord. Make your journey uniquely set apart for God, because He has made this journey you are on uniquely for you.
                “And next to him the men of Jericho built. And next to them Zaccur the son of Imri built. The sons of Hassenaah built the Fish Gate. They laid its beams and set its doors, its bolts, and its bars.” Nehemiah 3:2-3
                After the Sheep Gate, the first Gate was built, the walls and the rest of the gates could be
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built. Notice that in verse 3 Nehemiah tells us that they, “laid its beams and set its doors, its bolts, and its bars”? Nothing will stand unless all the nuts and bolts are in their proper places. Have you ever seen a door off its hinges? That’s what will happen to us if we do not lay down our beams first, and then the rest will follow. Your beams could be the structure of the company you are building, or the purpose of your ministry defined. The bolts could be your policies and procedures, your general operations. You have to build the door frame before you can hang the door.

                I think its important for us to remember that this journey we are on is taken one step at a time. I am reminded of my Salvation, and how it didn’t happen overnight. Jesus came as a babe, not as a grown Man ready to die. He came as a babe. He grew, He walked, and each day took one step closer to the joy that was set before Him, our salvation. His life on earth was not one giant leap to the end, but a process of steps that led to the final goal, His death on a cross. We are all walking towards something, a goal, a dream, or perhaps you are like us and building a business or a ministry. Whatever path you are on, remember that it will only be successful if you take it one step at a time. Rome was not built in one day.